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Q: How would violation of software license agreements affect different areas of life/economy,business,personal,legal?
A: If a single person violates a license agreement and the owner detects the violation, they may file suit to recover actual and punitive damages. [ The punitive damages could be substantial, as the jury will be made aware of the cost that stealing software has on the costs for those who do pay and will wish to send a statement that such violations are against the public interest. There would also
be a theft that could be prosecuted by the government in criminal court, but this is less likely than the civil suit by the software company. Once the suit is entered into court records and is not immediately dismissed, the person has a personal liability for conducting business with anyone who does a background check. If people violate license agreements, there is an involuntary transfer of wealth that doesn't necessarily harm the economy. It depends on what the person stealing the software does with the free software, vs what the company would do with the money they would get if the software was purchased and how many potential customers didn't buy the software because the price included the expected amount of piracy. If some of the potential customers would have expanded a business had they had the use of the software, then the impact could be substantial, but so could the impact of a great business concept hatched or nurtured with stolen software. ]
migzptz|Points 1713|
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Asked 9/18/2011 8:05:30 PM
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